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(ECONOMICS) Total unemployed, plus all persons marginally attached to the labor force, plus total employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of the civilian labor force plus all persons marginally attached to the labor force. Put another way, U-6 = U-3 (headline unemployment) + discouraged workers + part-time workers in need of full-time jobs.

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics regularly publishes six estimates of unemployment. The others are U-1, U-2, U-3, U-4, and U-5. Eurostat publishes one monthly estimate of unemployment for the European Union, which is approximately midway between U-3 and U-4.

The unemployment statistics for the USA are collected through a monthly Current Population Survey (CPS) (also known as the household survey) and an establishment survey.
U-6 is often referred to as "real unemployment" because it attempts to measure the total number of people who would like to have more work than they do have. Some have argued that U-6 is closer to historic measures of unemployment than U-3 is (we didn't have either during the Great Depression).
by Abu Yahya July 15, 2010
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